Since the introduction of Stage 4 restrictions in Melbourne, many have accused Dan Andrews of “destroying their business”. If you continue to think this way, you won’t disappoint yourself. Your business will be destroyed – by you. Blaming others is leadership into the abyss. You are better than that. It is your responsibility and priority to steer the ship to safer waters.

Any government’s immediate response to any emergency is always the sanctity of life and public health. According to their own emergency management plans, economic recovery is a lower priority. Your business is not on their radar, and it never will be in responding to an emergency, disaster or crisis that threatens lives.

Now is the best time for action. As a leader, it is time to be bold and set the tone for business recovery. There are four critical things to consider:

  • Generate cash flows
  • Your staff
  • Your customers
  • The opportunity that presents

Generate cashflows – Jobkeeper is merely a band-aid over an open economic wound. The Jobkeeper allowances diminish in September and will conclude in March. Your first objective must be to get off Jobkeeper at your earliest convenience. Not to save the public burden, but to ensure your business has restarted and is self-sufficient – viable. Set goals, generate cashflows, be they short, medium, or long term. Get moving now.

Your staff – If your people are sitting home on Jobkeeper doing nothing, awaiting reopening, there is every chance they feel neglected and would prefer to be making a solid contribution. As a leader, you must set goals to reopen, keep in contact with your staff, encourage and harness their ideas. Your team will become engaged and invested quickly. Remember their livelihood depends on the success of your business.

Your customers – at the very least would love to hear from you. Call them, drop an email, send chocolates. Customer engagement now is critical. Let them know that you’re thinking of them. There is a fair chance they are not thinking about you. Give them a reason to think about you without being annoying. Engage with them and find out what their challenges are and find ways to assist. You might just find sales or tune into their changing requirements. Jobkeeper covers the cost, you can only gain from making contact and showing that you care.

The opportunity that presents – Put together a list of the things that you’ve wanted to do but you’ve never had the time. You have the time and staff capacity now. Be it an online presence, update the website, new product and service lines, whatever, do it now. Involve your staff and make legacy items that support or generate cashflows.

In summary, it is not the government’s responsibility to make your business viable. It is your priority, leave the public health to them. At the same time, you set a direction to engage your staff and customers, be strategic. It is your time to stand up and lead!